February 12, 2006
 

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Posted: 11.04
Mobilize 2004: At Work on the Ranch
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Event informs and educates attendees about the importance of mobility in the enterprise.  

By Michelle Maisto and Eric M. Zeman




åJust a few short weeks ago, Mobile Enterprise and Frost & Sullivan launched the first Mobilize 2004 event at the Green Valley Ranch in Las Vegas. The conference was a three-day interactive assembly for senior executives who wanted to learn more about driving their enterprise’s mobile vision. By all accounts, the event was a success in achieving its goal: promoting mobility within the enterprise.

Mobile Enterprise would like to thank all the sponsors that helped make
the show a success. They are, in no particular order: Nokia, Panasonic, Route 1, Infowave, Broadbeam, Intermec, Thunderhawk, Motorola, Sony Ericsson, Psion Teklogix, Itronix, Dexterra, Appforge, Orsus, HP, Verizon Wireless, Oberthur, Extended Systems, TCS, MDS, Intellisync, IBM, AT&T, Qualcomm, Chantry, JPMobile, Wireless Matrix, Mobile Enterprise Alliance and Agentek. Anyone who has mobile needs should consider looking into these companies—each of them offers enterprise-leading solutions that can help your organization see improvements in productivity, cost reductions and improved customer relationships.

Mobile Enterprise would also like to thank our partner, Frost & Sullivan, for helping organize a great event. The planning was well managed and we couldn’t have done it without them. To the team at Frost, we extend our deepest gratitude.

A special note of thanks also goes to the many speakers, thought leaders and presenters. Everyone did a fine job of delivering key ideas to the audience and provided attendees with plenty to think about when it comes to mobility. Their knowledge and experience offered everyone top-quality information that would have cost a fortune to solicit from consultants or research firms.

Last, but certainly not least, Mobile Enterprise would like to thank the many attendees who found time in their busy schedules to travel to Las Vegas and join the event. The show would not have been a success without the presence and participation of these fine people. We hope you all learned a lot and found the solutions you were looking for.

Event Breakdown
Attendees were treated to a networking day on Sunday, Sept. 19, with a golf scramble and reception. Four quartets tied on the course, later settling the matter with a putt-off during the evening’s cocktail reception. These were great opportunities for attendees to relax, enjoy the fine Nevada weather and meet other participants.

Patrick Nugent, forum chairperson, got things started on Monday, Sept. 20, which saw the event shift into full gear with a day of workshops centered on security. First up was Jasyn Voshell, WLAN security director for Lockheed Martin, who gave an executive bulletin that seemed to find its way into several conversations over the following days. Voshell detailed the most common wireless threats and attacks, gave examples of why implementing a wireless intrusion detection system is imperative and explained the benefits that can be derived from implementing wireless security. Voshell told the crowd that he receives a message on his pager the moment there is a disruption in security, which means he can immediately start solving the problem. Such problems have ranged from a hired contractor innocently setting up an access point within the facility to a man with a van and malicious intent, trying to hack into the system from five miles down the road. In each situation, Voshell was able to resolve the problem expediently, which translates to protecting confidential intelligence and being more cost efficient overall.

Voshell was followed by Mike Brannon, senior manager of e-commerce with National Gypsum, who presented a case study on how to integrate mobile users and applications into the enterprise architecture securely, and then Dan MacDonald, VP of enterprise solutions with Nokia, who led a discussion aimed at helping attendees to better prepare for future enterprise mobility–related discussions, planning meetings, road mapping exercises and ROI modeling.

After lunch, David A. Wallace, director of IT security with Travelocity, presented a case study examining the competitive pressures of a post-deregulation environment, line of business
drivers for examining and deploying wireless, relevant wireless standards and strategies for securely deploying wireless LANs. Ananth Rao, executive VP and co-founder of JP Mobile, led a discussion about building mobile device security specifications by educating attendees about the importance of firewalls, anti-virus software, intrusion detection and prevention, and man-in-the-middle and Trojan horse attacks. And Inderpreet Singh, chief architect with Chantry Networks, led a discussion about Wi-Fi and WLAN security in particular, highlighting the basics of wireless security covering WPA, 802.11i and WPA2, and selecting between security appliances, mobile VPNs and software security solutions.

Monday’s events concluded with a Q&A hosted by Mobile Enterprise editorial board member and columnist, as well as president of Creative Strategies, Tim Bajarin.

Bajarin took the stage again the next morning, kicking off Tuesday’s
events with a seminar on the ways that mobile computing is fast becoming a mission-critical enterprise tool. With an array of leading and next-generation devices on display, Tim suggested which items should be on our radar, described the ways wireless applications will affect IT departments and teased the audience with sparse details about a soon-to-be released, “very, very cool product.”

Following Tim, Daniel Taylor, managing director of the Mobile Enterprise Alliance, moderated a panel of mobile “superpowers,” who shared the positive aspects of their experiences, as well as the pitfalls others might try to avoid. Norm Buchanan, director of process and technology development at Sears, provided an “A through Z” of the company’s successful mobile strategy, which has resulted in industry-leading scores for excellence in customer service. And Julius Akinyemi, director of Emerging Technologies at PepsiCo, discussed the importance of achieving buy-in at the corporate level in order to deploy a mobile solution with success.

Over lunch, Dan MacDonald, VP of Nokia Enterprise Solutions, took to the podium with a keynote address. MacDonald implored decision makers to take on the cause of mobility, explaining the dangers of allowing a mobile initiative to fall to the IT department, which in most cases has neither the budget nor the resources to push the deployment through. A mobile deployment, said MacDonald, should be an initiative from upper management, which has the clout to back it and the ability to garner widespread corporate buy-in and success down the road.

Following lunch, sessions resumed with three concurrent ThinkTanks, which encouraged discussion and interactive strategizing. The first ThinkTank, led by Raphik Ouahsine of Oberthur Card Systems, focused on digital rights management and the demand for securing data in the field. The second, led by Roger Cresswell of Itronix, considered mobile computing platforms and their role in extending the enterprise into mobile computing. And the third, led by Jeffrey Siegel of Extended Systems, discussed strategic applications for empowering a field team.

Eric M. Zeman, Mobile Enterprise’s editor-in-chief, moderated a panel discussion between Craig Johnson of Connexus Engery, Tony Fuller of Rent-A-Center and Fred Landis of Frost & Sullivan. Audience members benefited from the panelists’ combined years of experience as Zeman picked their brains regarding the best ways to go about implementing a mobile solution: Was it better to run a pilot or just fully deploy? Should rollout be based more on process or on hardware? When is it helpful to look for user feedback?

An interactive “crossfire” followed, in which the audience was encouraged to question both a group of thought leaders—John McGee of Emcor Group, David A. Wallace of Travelocity.com and Roman Hlutkowsky of FedEx Ground—and a panel of vendor representatives. A rowdy debate, provoked by an audience member’s comment, addressed the pros and cons of looking to a smaller vendor versus a larger one, as well as the importance of partnering in the industry. Several excellent comments were made, and if there was a point most everyone could agree on, it was that no one vendor can exceptionally meet each of an enterprise’s needs: Compiling a select group of partners is key.

Wednesday’s sessions began with a presentation by Bob Egan, president and founder of Mobile Competency, and Mobile Enterprise columnist and board member. Bob was later joined on stage by Cindy Patterson, VP of Enterprise Data Sales at Verizon Wireless, whom he questioned regarding current projects and what we can look forward to.

Following Bob and Cindy, Brian L. Ashe, a consultant and former manager of measurement and quality service for the Shell Pipeline Company, discussed the case history of Shell’s mobile initiative, after which attendees joined one of four concurrent “roundtables”—participant-driven discussions addressing specific key issues and concerns.

Jan Dehesh, VP of Enterprise Market Development at Qualcomm, took the podium at lunch to deliver a keynote address but surprised the crowd by handing over the microphone to Joel Quimpo, who announced breaking news: Verizon Wireless was expanding its BroadbandAccess service to include 8 more airports and 14 additional cities, starting with San Diego and Washington, D.C.

Post lunch, Daniel Taylor, managing director of the Mobile Enterprise Alliance, moderated an interactive discussion on best practices, after which, three concurrent “mind shares” featured topic-specific panels of thought leaders who addressed audience questions and real-world issues. Finally, a roundtable discussion led by Frost & Sullivan’s VP of information and communications technology, Joe Fristensky, book-ended three packed days of discussion and debate. Fristensky queried a panel of more than 10 thought leaders, which resulted in perhaps the most lively and engaging discussion of the entire event. The panelists, many of whom had been spotlighted by Frost & Sullivan for exhibiting excellence in their industry space, were at one point asked what percentage of their time they spent with their clients—and also, as part of an aside point Fristensky was making, what type of car they drove. The punchline belonged to Dr. Judah Ben-Hur, a self-described “humble physicist” and CTO of Gaiacomm International, who detailed the outside-the-box work he was doing in the space of terahertz (as opposed to gigahertz) and concluded by saying he used to drive a chariot.

Participants let down their hair at a cocktail and then dinner reception, followed by Mobile Enterprise magazine’s Mobilizer Awards and then Frost & Sullivan’s Excellence in Mobile Communications Awards. Krishna Srinivasan, president of Frost & Sullivan, remarked that he was “proud that Frost & Sullivan is able to identify the companies who are changing and growing this industry and to recognize their tremendous dedication and innovation in each of their respective markets,” before handing engraved-glass awards to 20 beaming recipients.

We at Mobile Enterprise are already looking forward to Mobilize 2005. We hope to see you there.

—Michelle Maisto and
Eric M. Zeman
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